Lenten Reader | Day 37

Thy Will

Jesus went out as usual to the Mount of Olives, and his disciples followed him. On reaching the place, he said to them, “Pray that you will not fall into temptation.” He withdrew about a stone’s throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him. And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.

When he rose from prayer and went back to the disciples, he found them asleep, exhausted from sorrow. “Why are you sleeping?” he asked them. “Get up and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.”

- Luke 22:39-46
“Life is hard, but God is good.” A cliché that is often used but so true of the nature of God. When life is hard, God is not only good – He is with us.

On the night that he was betrayed, Jesus went to the Mount of Olives to pray. He had his “prayer team,” the disciples, with him, but they fell asleep. He was alone. Only honest, anguished prayers were heard by God from his beloved Son.

“Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me…” Jesus’ heart cried out to his heavenly father asking for another way that was not so horrific as the cross. “…yet not my will but yours be done.” Christ’s prayer was coupled with his surrender to God’s will. Surrendering his heart-felt fears by laying them all out in prayer moved his father to answer. “An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him.”

Has God’s help come to you when you cried out to him? Did he send “an angel” that brought you encouragement through bringing a meal, sending a card, or calling on the phone? Maybe God’s help came from experiencing a deep sense of peace from a song or Scripture that resonated with your soul.

We may feel alone and overwhelmed by the seemingly unsurmountable challenges of life, but God is with us. The hard times of life with either distract us will fear or bring us closer to him. God is good to remain with us. Prayer keeps us close to him. His word promises to keep us steady and at peace. “When life is hard…God is good.”

-Anne Cox